Saturday, September 26, 2015
The email we were waiting for came to our inbox last night. I was out getting groceries with all four kids and returned an exhausted mess. After gathering enough strength to put up dozens of bags of items and helping get the kids to bed, I caught up with Kris' day as he had recently returned from another 14 hour day in the field. An hour later, he mentioned "You do know L got approved to be hosted again?". My mouth dropped. I smiled, sort of, and asked why he didn't tell me sooner, but in reality I already knew why. It was good, but hard. It was heavy news. Reality gave a smack down. The door we are cringing to walk through has opened. The first time, we were oblivious. We were excited, anxious, and hopeful. This time, we are guarded, heavy hearted, and holding on for dear life. We know we need to do this. We know we still love her. We still want her. Deep down we are glad we'll see her again and have her safely in our nurturing home where we want her to belong.
This hard reality we are facing is what Jesus faces with our hearts every day. He knows the pain of rejection. He stretched out his hands on that cross and gave His all for the redemption of mankind. He left the glory of heaven, perfection in the presence of His Father, to be with us. To be a sacrificial offering on our behalf. He did it, and He knew in advance what it would cost Him:
-Lack of gratitude
-Pain and suffering on all levels
-The weight of our sin on Himself
He knew that more would reject His love than accept it. But He did it because He was obeying His Father. He loved us enough to take it. He knew that His Father would be glorified.
I can only strive to model Jesus by doing this. We are putting a lot on the line for L. We are giving up a lot to have her here, and by saying "yes" to hosting her, we are saying "no" to adopting and/or hosting others who are praying and pleading for a chance at having a family. Yet God chose her for us.
It doesn't make sense.
But we don't know the end of the story.
We don't know what her life will look like 7 years from now when she's on her own. We don't know if the time she spent with us will change her life forever or not. We don't know if she will embrace a relationship with Christ as a result of seeing Him in our family. But we do know we must give her another chance. We told her we love her every day for five weeks. Love does not give up easily, despite an answer of "I don't know" when asked if she'd like to join our family forever.
We were told "many children say that- there are so many reasons". We understand, really we do. But even when the mind understands logic, the heart still hurts and the grief is still there.
Is God a God of second chances? Absolutely. Should we model after Him and open our hearts again after our love has been rejected? In this situation, this is what Kris and I feel He has confirmed in our hearts we must do.
She will arrive about a week before Christmas and stay about four weeks.
This may be one of the most joyful Christmases we've ever had, followed by a very difficult January when we say goodbye. Will she say "yes" to adoption this time? We don't know. That's what's so hard. If she says no we know God is still good, and we know our time with her not only has changed her life (hopefully for eternity) but has changed ours to become more like Jesus as well.